110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
DeLand braces for influx of football fans
By Pat Andrews
posted Aug 30, 2013 - 1:02:02pm
Football fans and alumni continue to pour into DeLand today in anticipation of Stetson University's first football game since 1956. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, Aug. 31.
In the meantime, one fan will be able to attend courtesy of a pair of season tickets donated to The Beacon newspaper by Stetson University.
A drawing for the season passes was conducted at high noon today, at The Beacon.
DeLand Mayor Bob Apgar performed the honors, with Kevin Reid of the accounting firm of Dreggors, Rigsby and Teal supervising. The lucky winner is 7-year-old Abigail Sutherland, daughter of Jennifer and John Sutherland of DeLand.
Abigail was in school when her name was drawn. Her mom, Jennifer, fielded The Beacon's phone call to notify Abigail of her win.
Jennifer said Abigail is a college-footfall fan, as is the whole family, including two more children, Ashley, who's 11, and 2-year-old Ava, who may be more of an aspiring football fan. The Sutherlands will purchase more tickets to supplement the season tickets won in the drawing.
"We'll make it a family day," Jennifer said.
Stetson University donated the tickets to thank the community for its support, and to thank The Beacon for the special Stetson University football tab, Halftime is Finally Over!
The magazine section has all the Stetson football information you'll need — the team, the coaches, the schedule, the history of Stetson football, and more. If you don't yet have a copy, look for the guys in Beacon T-shirts who will be passing out the commemorative magazines during tailgating festivities — at no charge.
Way to begin the season!
While Mayor Apgar was at The Beacon, he mentioned that local hotels are booked up for the Stetson game.
He was right. DeLand is bracing for the influx of football fans.
Both the Comfort Inn and the Clarion report they are booked solid Saturday night, Aug. 31. Some rooms are still available tonight.
Downtown restaurants are also cooking for a crowd.
"The phone's been ringing off the hook" at Cress Restaurant, DeLand's contribution to award-winning global cuisine, Chef Hari Pulapaka said.
He's not sure how much of that is due to Stetson football and how much is due to "just a busy weekend," he said.
"Saturday's looking fairly booked," but some walk-in customers can be accommodated, Pulapaka added.
Cress will be open for dinner only.
Santorini Greek Cuisine and Oudom's Thai & Sushi restaurants expect overflow crowds. Both restaurants are generally full on Saturday nights anyway, representatives said. Santorini's will be open for lunch and dinner and Oudom's will be open for dinner only. Neither restaurant accepts reservations.
Mainstreet Grill, which serves up American and continental cuisine, does accept reservations, and they may be a good idea, but reservations are not required, staff said. The restaurant anticipates a brisk volume of business for lunch and dinner Saturday.
Dally in the Alley, at the south end of Artisan Alley, behind The Beacon, also accepts reservations, though most diners are walk-ins. The urban-style bistro, which will be open for dinner only on Saturday, expects a brisk business both tonight and tomorrow night.
For people who won't be attending the game, waiting until after the 7 p.m. kickoff to visit restaurants may lessen wait times for dinner.
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